If you love being in the heart of the action, Downtown Boulder is the place to be. The buzzing atmosphere of Pearl Street with the stunning backdrop of the flatirons makes this a popular place with families, students, and professionals. Whether you’re planning on moving to Downtown Boulder or just want to make the most of your visit, here’s everything you need to know.
A short history
Boulder began as a supply town for local gold miners who worked up in the mountains. Pearl Street is the beating heart of the Downtown area and is thought to be named after the wife of one of Boulder’s 54 founders who founded the town in 1859.
Even after gold mining dried up, Boulder continued to flourish with what is now known as Downtown being the hub.
Top things to do
From buying gourmet food at the Farmers’ Market to cycling the popular Boulder Creek Path, there is no end of things to do in Downtown Boulder.
This is the main shopping strip of Downtown. It’s brick-paved and pedestrianized so the perfect place to spend a lazy Saturday. There are trendy restaurants, cafes, microbreweries, shops, and more to explore.
The historic Boulder Theater has been hosting films and shows since 1906 and continues to be a favorite spot in Downtown. You’ll now find plenty of music gigs from local up-and-comers as well as well-known artists here. Sheryl Crow, The Samples, and Shawn Colvin are a few artists who have played here.
You can’t talk about things to do in Boulder without mentioning the iconic Flatirons. The hiking trails are popular with locals and draw tourists to the area every year. Chautauqua is the best place to truly take in the view and has some of the most popular trails, and it’s just a few minutes away from Downtown.
It’s probably no surprise that house prices in Downtown are some of the highest in Boulder. The median list price for Boulder is $685K, whereas Downtown has a median price of $1.29M. Houses are snapped up quickly too since it’s such a sought-after area.
If you’re looking to rent, a 1-bed apartment in Downtown Boulder will cost you around $2,700 a month.
There are so many great places to try for yourself when you visit Downtown Boulder. But here are some of our personal favorites:
Jax Fish House
You’ll find Jax Fish House at the west end of Pearl Street, and it’s one of Colorado’s best seafood restaurants. It holds a few “best-of” titles and serves all sustainable seafood, making it better for the environment.
Riffs Urban Fare
Riffs is a relaxed, urban spot that’s another must-visit. The food is fresh, inspired by Boulder, and will not disappoint. If you’re looking for a cool spot to grab dinner and a few drinks with friends, Riffs is a great spot.
Boulder Farmers’ Market
Boulder’s Farmers’ Market is ranked the best farmers’ market by USA Today readers. It’s been in operation since 1986 and has everything you could want from a market. Fresh, seasonal produce, eggs, artisan cheese, flowers, wines, gourmet food, you name it.
Museum of Boulder
The best way to learn about Boulder’s interesting history is a trip to the Museum of Boulder. It’s not your average, stuffy museum; it’s got a range of interactive exhibits that are great for kids, as well as regular traveling exhibitions, art shows, and events. You can also go up to the roof to get a mind-blowing view of the flatirons.
Top reasons to live here
From the fresh produce and artisanal finds at the Farmers’ Market to the fantastic restaurants lining Pearl Street, Downtown Boulder is the best place for foodies.
Boulder is rated the number one place to live for quality of life and is 7th on the list of safest places to live. It’s full of friendly people, giving it a great community atmosphere that you’ll feel as soon as you visit.
Plenty to do
Downtown is the beating heart of Boulder and puts you right in the heart of the actions. You get the perfect mix of buzzing nightlife and beautiful green space, giving families plenty to do and explore.
Great transport links
Being central also means you have excellent transport links to the wider Boulder areas. Regular bus routes and well-connected major roads mean you can explore the area easily without the need for grueling drives.
A day in Downtown Boulder
If you’ve got just one day to spend in Boulder, here is how to do it:
Snooze Cafe Breakfast
Fuel up for the day with a tasty breakfast at Snooze Cafe. Their eggs and pancakes are both legendary, not to mention their selection of pies.
Explore Pearl Street
Next up, it’s time to explore Pearl Street. This is what most people come to Downtown to explore and since it’s pedestrianized, it’s perfect for a lazy day of shopping. You’ll find handmade gifts, delicious food, bakeries, breweries, and all the big-name shops you could ask for.
Take an eBike Tour
What better way to learn more about Downtown Boulder than with a fun eBike tour? You can learn the history of Boulder while having fun zipping around town – a popular activity for families.
5. See the Flatirons
No day in Downtown Boulder is complete without visiting the flatirons. They are iconic in Boulder and truly beautiful to see in person. To make the most of them, head to nearby Chautauqua which has some of the best views as well as some of the most popular hiking trails in Boulder. It’s a quick 10-minute drive outside of Downtown, making it the perfect way to end your day.
We hope this guide of Downtown Boulder has got you excited to visit. With so much to do and explore, it’s no surprise that this is one of the most popular places to live in Boulder.
If you’ve decided to call Downtown Boulder home, we’d love to be your moving team. Call us today if you have any questions about the area, or want to learn more about our extensive moving services!
As of 2021, there are 92 vacation rentals listed in Downtown Boulder, giving you plenty of options for a trip with your family or alone.
Yes, many vacation rentals in Downtown Boulder have swimming pools and large yards for kids to run and play.